This is Supposed to be a HAPPY Occasion

Yes, I could rant at you today about the debt mess or the Norway bombings or Amy Winehouse not going to rehab, but you know what? Today I feel like not talking about any of that. So here, have some pictures of people getting married in New York yesterday. It makes me feel better about the world today, in any event.

44 thoughts on “This is Supposed to be a HAPPY Occasion

  1. The third picture down is pretty moving. It is great and all to see couples who have been together so long finally get the official recognition, but the fathers hugging their daughters is such a beautiful family moment. It’s like they are normal people and everything. May we see many more news stories like this soon.

  2. Damn, that homosexual agenda looks really scary. Have you fortified the Scalzi Compound against elderly lesbians in wheelchairs (they’re Daleks I tell you!) who want to grind your marriage to dust under their wheels and force you and the Missus to wear matching outfits?

  3. My favorite is the two old guys who were together for 51 years. Sure, lots of old hetero people get married, too, but generally they haven’t gotten together until they’re already older. With many gay couples, there’s an additional factor of knowing how long they’ve been waiting.

  4. Love the pictures–I’m so happy for all these couples. I long to see this happen throughout the nation. It might take a long time, but we’ll get there someday.

  5. @ #3

    the first thing that I thought is that it is no wonder the homophobe crowd wants to do away with equal marriage rights. After all, how many hetero couples make it as far as these to gentlemen have? 51 year? Holy partnership!

  6. I know my marriage is stronger now after looking at all the joyful photos with my husband. It is a happy occasion.

  7. I’ve never understood the “xtian right/conservative” agenda which seems to imply that, somehow, what consenting couples do in the privacy of their bedroom is any of my business. I’ve also never understood what any of that has to do with inheritance benefits, health insurance, hospital visitation, etc. I love all these photos, but I’m still greatly saddened that the majority of states in this country still refuse to ratify/accept gay marriage. I’m a hetero, conservative, atheist married woman, and there’s just something wrong with the fact I have all the benefits I described above, simply because my spouse’s name is (I’m changing it here, but the point remains the same) John and not Johanna. There’s something wrong with corporate DADT policies which make it impossible for gay couples to display pictures of themselves at work, and which make it impossible to honestly answer the question “What did you do this weekend?” for fear of offending a homophobe who’s unaware of a coworker’s proclivities. I hope such rampant fear and discrimination can be resolved in my lifetime. This is definitely a step in the right direction, but I’m not holding my breath on the rest of it.

    Mazel tov, felicitades (sp), good luck and much happiness to all the NY couples, and I hope they all have many (more) happy years together!

  8. thank you for sharing this
    there is so much happiness in these photos.
    why are people hatin’ on the happy??

    I have never understood the xian judging others thing.
    I always thought the rules were QUITE CLEAR.
    1) turn the other cheek
    2) dont judge others
    3) love thy neighbors

    where is it ok to judge and hate??

    /we dont hate the sinner? we just hate the sin? please spare me

  9. Blub.

    A few years after my state does the right thing, so does the state where I was born and raised.

    Welcome to the happy club, New York. It’s great to see you here.

  10. I remember a conversation with my mom about love, and trying to understand why she could think that consenting adults loving each other could be wrong. That would’ve been around 50 years ago (dang!); I think I’ve waited most of my life to see this.

  11. I am a conservative.

    There are several reasons why conservatives oppose gay marriage.

    1. They think it is a choice and that choosing to be gay is immoral.

    2. They are afraid of gays.

    3. They think that the social structure that made America great is being eroded by changing the basic tenants of what defines our culture.

    Personally, I think they are completely wrong on all counts. It drives me crazy that conservatives make an issue of this.

    We are what we are, and love is love.

    A real conservative should want government to stay the hell out of marriage. Less government is almost always better government. But for goodness sake, if you are going to tax me for getting married, tax everyone.

  12. I am just glad to see that gay couples who have been together for many years ALSO tend to dress alike – just like heterosexual married couples. Which unfortunately ruins my theory that it’s primarily the wife’s fault that we end up dressing alike.

  13. I gotta admit, the picture does make one feel good about life in the USA.

    As usual I’ve got a question, how do you feel about polygamy ? There is a whole bunch of people here in Texas (and Utah but you knew that) very interested in it.

  14. Beautiful pictures! Can’t wait until California gets its civil rights in order and re-allows this.

  15. Lynn McGuire@#14:

    As usual, I’ll keep asking WTF polygamy has to do with marriage equality in New York or anywhere else except as a blatant (and crude) distract-troll?

    BillyQuiets@#12:

    ITA. Andrew Sullivan — who was talking about same-sex marriage looong before it got trendy :) — also made the point that he couldn’t see why conservatives have any problems with gays and lesbians wanting to make a public commitment to each other for life.

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,460232,00.html

    Ted Olson is also movingly reality-based here.

    http://www.newsweek.com/2010/01/08/the-conservative-case-for-gay-marriage.html

  16. Why do people claim to be conservative or liberal when sometimes they lean right and sometimes they lean left, depending on the subject. It seems that conservatives and liberals agree on some things and disagree on other things, depending on the person. A real conservative or liberal is pretty much what an individual conservative or liberal believes it is. I don’t get why anyone bothers claiming to be one or the other.

    Myself. I’m a Christian, I’m not opposed to gay marriages, I have some conservative views and some liberal views.

    I think the only real conservatives or liberals are the extremists, because they are 100% one way or the other. Most people don’t want to be like them.

  17. Rob @18 – nicely said. Most of us fall somewhere in the middle rather than on either end of the scale. We may lean one way or the other, but basically we are in the center somewhere.

    Billy Quiets @12 – also nicely said. I think you could lump all of these reasons under a single over-reaching one – fear. They fear change. They fear different. They fear anything that challenges their nice, safe assumptions. Gay marriage is just the current boogy man in the room.

    All that aside, the joy in the faces is just beautiful. I loved the one where the family was hugging, two little girls just thrilled to death that their parents were so very happy. I also loved the one with the family going through the pictures. Anyone who dares to claim that such unions are in some way a threat to the idea of family should take a good look at these. Families are doing just fine. Heck, I would venture to guess that they are probably doing even better as a result of this law.

  18. Craig@17,

    Thank you for the links. Good Stuff. I don’t know Ted Olson from the second article, but it would be nice if he were one of the candidates for the Republican nomination wouldn’t it?

    Kathryne@19,

    I almost wrote that there were several reasons that conservatives opposed gay marriage, and they were 1. Fear 2. Fear. 3. Fear.

    I could say that the same holds true for many liberals fear of the Tea Party, however.

    If we could just get past a whole lot of unreasonable fear of people we don’t understand, we might actually get somewhere.

  19. I got married in Washington State last fall and it was incredible. I had gone my whole adult life thinking I would never be able to marry the woman I love in front of family and friends.

    Weddings and marriage should be available to whoever wants to do it. Love is not rationed, even by the Big Man in the Sky.
    The associated rights should be for anyone as well or no one. No other way to do it and remain the United States of America. It’s how we roll.

  20. My beloved niece is getting “married” this weekend (in a state where the real thing isn’t available) and MARRIED next week (in D.C.).

    This is an occasion for rejoicing.

    I’ve been married 30 years. I think marriage is great. I’m glad more people can have what I have.

  21. I don’t know Ted Olson from the second article, but it would be nice if he were one of the candidates for the Republican nomination wouldn’t it?

    @Billy: Ted Olson was a founder of the Federalist Society, served in the Reagan administration, was a pretty high-profile critic of Clinton (along with his wife, who died in the 9/11 attacks), represented Bush in Bush v. Gore and became his first Solicitor General before returning to private practice in 2004. Safe to say, he’s hardly a radical leftist proponent of judicial activism in the service of the homosexual agenda. :) And he sure didn’t team with David Boies to represent the plaintiffs in Perry v. Schwarzenegger because he needed the work to make the rent. You don’t keep getting hired to argue cases before the US Supreme Court — and win 80% of them — without being able to make a case and sell the shit out of it.

  22. @14: “As usual I’ve got a question, how do you feel about polygamy ? There is a whole bunch of people here in Texas (and Utah but you knew that) very interested in it.”

    Personally, if three or more people come together from different backgrounds and find that they have a working poly relationship, I’d have a hard time arguing against it.

    The problem is with the closed polygamous societies, where kids are groomed for it, maybe aren’t given any other options in life, the leader marries 13 year old daughters of other members, etc. Perhaps that would stop if they could be open about it, and recruit adults from outside the group, but I kinda doubt it.

    Another difference between polygamy and same-sex marriage is that same-sex marriage fits pretty neatly into the existing body of laws; there’s still only two spouses, so things like tax or estate issues don’t change. Polygamy could be more complicated, I think.

    If nothing else these two factors would seem likely to slow down any pro-polygamy movements.

  23. As a sister with two gay siblings can I just say “yes, we are finaly getting there!” Now when are all the other states going to do what’s right?

  24. Just think about what the world was like when the couple that had been together 51 years first got together. That would be 1960 if I’m not mistaken. JFK not yet in the White House. Rosa Parks just 5 years before and the Selma to Montgomery marches not for 5 more years.
    The Civil Rights Act was in 1964, not that it helped them at all, but they persevered all these years, in love, just waiting for the day.

    Man, it’s nice that day is here.

  25. Jon H @ 24:

    Are you aware that very similar criticisms can be leveled against some two-person marriages in some societies, including significant subsets of US society? Culturally-reinforced patriarchal and/or abusive relationships aren’t a function of the number of people in the relationship. (And, yes, the monogamy-centric nature of society as a whole does make it more difficult for people in abusive polygamous relationships to get help, just as it used to be much harder for people in abusive same-sex relationships to get help.)

    And as far as polygamous relationships being generally more complicated legally, well, yes. And …? The legal structures of multi-billion dollar multinational corporations are generally more complicated than that of the local bakery, too.

  26. You will be pleased to know that this post is currently the second hit when googling “this is supposed to be a happy occasion” (without quotes or with).

  27. I’m still ecstatic even though several people have already fallen for the concern trolling.

  28. Thank you for that Scalzi. I needed some happy and there is nothing like seeing that to make a person happy.
    The first couple look related. If not sisters! The matching blue shirts don’t help. I couldn’t help wondering if its a case of couples being together so long that they start to look alike.

    I can’t wait until this whole fight is a just a part of history.

  29. Half or more of those couples are interracial. I notice that there has been no mention of that in any of the news I’ve seen. In historic terms, that’s pretty recent; some of the same-sex couples being married in NewYork have been together since interracial marriages were illegal in many states. The utter un-newsworthiness of the marriage of people with different skin tones gives me great hope that someday the marriage of those with similar dangly bits (or lack thereof) will be equally unremarkable.

    I’m a fan of happy marriages. It’s nice to see more people able to have them.

  30. Yay Gay marriage!

    But before you made the gratuitous mention of Amy Winehouse it might have been wise to check Google. She died suddenly on Saturday.

  31. smart conservatives don’t waste their time being opposed to gay rights. there are plenty of gay people who don’t want large deficits. it is the stupid ones who alienate them. then they go to the democrats.

    we need more log cabin republicans. being gay has nothing to do with your opinion on taxes.

  32. I’m still waiting for someone to give me a sufficient explanation as to how, exactly, this negatively impacts my heterosexual marriage. I haven’t really noticed it eroding since midnight on Saturday.

  33. The couple in the first two photos — Phyllis and Connie — have been together for 23 years. They are 84 and 76. Time Warner’s NY1 televised their ceremony Sunday morning. NY1 has the video up at their website. I had just turned on the TV when it was happening. I got a lump in my throat because, dang it, they were finally able to get official recognition of a relationship that has sustained them for many years. It was a good day for so many people.

  34. Guess:

    At this point in history, a gay person being a Republican isn’t too far off a black man joining the KKK.

  35. This makes me deliriously happy. I’m just looking at the faces of the older couples, and thinking how long they’ve had to wait, and how they’ve stayed together, and why anyone would think that kind of love is inferior or shouldn’t be recognized by the laws of the land as something worth protecting with legal rights. I have the urge to collage all these pictures on a 4x billboard in my front lawn (to the dismay of many of my neighbors.)

    On our local Public Radio – WABE station last night, Denis O’Hayer spoke with Randy Kessler regarding the impact this will have on Georgia, which is a DOMA state. It’s going to infinitely complicate the law here (which was a constitutional amendment) in that in being unable to recognize same sex marriages means they can’t grant divorces nor administrate for settlements including child custody and/or child support or alimony. Kessler is of a mind that those laws will ultimately be what brings DOMA down in the State of Georgia.

    When the amendment came up, I was at the capitol with my cousin and her partner of 25 years to try to persuade our congresscritters this was a bad choice and did not serve the public interest. We failed to stop, but I’m totally ready to take it on again — and this time with my own partner by my side. I promise to send pictures -grins-.

  36. This was much better to look at than pretty much anything else on the news lately. I’m not gonna lie; the elderly couples finally able to legally formalize their marriage (they were already married in every other way, IMHO), brought a tear to my eye. The thought that people de facto married for 34 or 51 years might not be allowed to visit their spouse on their deathbed, or make decisions for them about end-of-life care, is disgusting, but all too possible in too much of our country.

  37. On a somewhat related topic, did you see Senator Al Franken’s questioning of a witness before the Judiciary Committee? Maybe we need other Saturday Night Live cast members to enter politics if they’re going to be as good at it as he appears to be.

  38. Kevin Williams:

    “At this point in history, a gay person being a Republican isn’t too far off a black man joining the KKK.”

    Yeah, no, that’s not really a very good analogy at all, and needlessly offensive besides. It might be more to your point to say that a gay person being a Republican isn’t too far off from a black man campaigning for George Wallace in the 60s.

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